I must admit.....the results of the 2010 midterm election came as a surprise to this blogger. I suppose primarily because just 2 years prior, voters overwhelmingly installed Democrats in Congress as well as in the White House. Progressive voters stayed home in 2010 but Tea-fueled conservatives rallied around "pulling the plug on grandma", "hoping Obama will fail", and "take our country back" slogans of bitterness. They worked hard and it paid off. After running the nation into ditches everywhere you looked in the 00's, Republicans regained control of the House of Representatives January 2011.
The new Tea-flavored GOP House had promised jobs, jobs, jobs while campaigning before November, 2010. But after taking the oath of office, that same TeaHouse offered nothing but limits on abortion, defunding of Planned Parenthood and three hostage taking events which threatened to shut down all of government. The one thing that Tea-flavored House Republicans did not focus on was......jobs, jobs, jobs.
During the third of three attempts by House Republicans to shut down government in 2011, an agreement was struck. In return for raising the debt ceiling of the U.S., Republicans and Democrats agreed to the Super Committee. Remember that? The Super Committee's job was to come to an agreement on how debt and deficits would be dealt with in the coming years. But alas, the Committee was not so Super....and no agreement was reached.
In the original agreement from August, 2011....if the Supers couldn't reach an agreement, "triggers" would go into affect. Which meant that $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts would begin January 2013. The $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts was to be divided equally....that's equally.....between defense cuts and non-defense cuts.
This week, Tea House Republicans will vote on a bill which will break last year's agreement into smithereens....
House Republicans are set to advance legislation to replace automatic defense spending cuts they agreed to last year with cuts to programs for the poor and working class. The controversial measure is expected to pass the House and die in the Senate, making it largely a political exercise....
Republicans screech loudly that our nation has a spending problem, not a revenue problem. Yet when it comes to honoring bipartisan agreements to cut spending on national defense.....these Tea-flavored Republicans are welchers. Republicans aren't against government spending......they're against government spending they don't like. And what kind of spending are we talking about that Republicans don't like? Glad you asked....
The proposal — which is an outgrowth of the budget the House GOP overwhelmingly voted for late March — would cut some $261 billion from health care programs, food stamps, unemployment benefits and child tax credits, among others. It constitutes a violation of the GOP’s end of the debt-limit deal, which included painful sacrifices for both parties if the Congress failed to reach a bipartisan deficit-reduction agreement.
Worst recession in a lifetime and Republicans will choose wasteful military spending over American citizens in need. It doesn't get any clearer than that. In many ways, there really is no difference between the two political parties. Both usually serve corporate interests over the interests of average citizens. But in this particular case, there's a distinction. Republican House members would rather cut $261 billion from health care programs, food stamps, unemployment benefits and child tax credits.....than to see any cuts to our bloated and wasteful military industrial complex.
The Senate, still under the control of Democrats, will not pass the TeaHouse burn-the-poor-and-needy bill....and House Republicans know that going in. And that makes it even worse. House Republicans are simply going through the motions to score political performance points...and if that's so.....what does that tell you about House Republicans and the constituencies they represent?
What kind of American, what kind of voter chooses big, wasteful military complex contracts over the basic life-needs of their American brethren during a historic economic downturn? Does this type of, yes, class warfare, actually appeal to conservative voters? Do conservatives "win" something by making all their defense complex masters' dreams come true at the sake of poor, elderly and vulnerable U.S. citizens? If so...what is it that's won? Wingnut bragging rights?
Finally, do not forget. The only reason "sequestration" is even necessary is because Republicans will never agree to raise taxes...ever again...on our wealthy overlords....as part of a balanced plan to reduce deficits and debt. Republicans balked at any notion that new revenue from obscenely-rich citizens could ever be part of a Super Committee agreement. That led to the automatic, and binding, "sequestration" trigger mandating $600 billion to be cut from defense and $600 billion to be cut from non-defense.
Now, the same group which couldn't bear any tax increases on the rich few.....cannot bear any spending cuts, either....but only cuts on our most wasteful and bloated government department...defense. But what the rich-coddling, defense complex-serving Republicans CAN do is rip up all previous agreements with Democrats and go after the lavish, extravagant lifestyles of the poor, the elderly, the sick and the vulnerable.
Remember that on election day.
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